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Do not remove the bandage before you are able to wash your new tattoo, as it may allow bacteria to enter the skin, or blood and plasma to dry and become scabby.
As soon as you get home, remove the bandage and wash your tattoo with a mild, unscented soap and warm water. The surface of your tattoo will feel slimy. It is very important to wash off all of the slimy build-up that has accumulated on the surface. Failure to remove this build-up can result in scabbing.
Apply a very thin layer of an approved ointment. Aquaphor, A&D, or a tattoo specific balm are some of the best choices you can make for use on a fresh tattoo. If you can spread it or wipe it off, it's too thick. Go ahead and wipe it off.
Re-wash and re-apply a thin layer of ointment every 4-6 hours, or as needed, to keep your new tattoo soft for the first 2-3 days.
On the 3rd-4th day, switch to a mild, unscented lotion such as Lubriderm or Eucerin (make sure your lotion is a non-alcohol base). Continue to apply lotion as needed throughout the rest of the week while the tattoo finishes scaling.
For at least 2 weeks, it is important to remember NOT to:
* tan in the sun or tanning bed
* go swimming
* scratch your tattoo
* pick at small scabs or flaky skin
* take long, hot soaking baths
* use alcohol, peroxide, or other drying products on your tattoo
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